Tyra Banks Accused by 'America's Next Top Model' Alum Lisa D'Amato of Exploiting 'Childhood Trauma'

Tyra Banks is being accused of exploiting model Lisa D'Amato's "childhood traumas" for entertainment value on America's Next Top Model. D'Amato, who placed sixth on Cycle 5 of ANTM in 2005 and would go on to win Cycle 17's All-Star season in 2011, called out Banks specifically in a new Instagram video posted Thursday as she criticized the host and creator of the modeling competition for alleged mistreatment.

The model claimed that when she filmed an episode of E! True Hollywood Story about the behind-the-scenes of ANTM, she risked being sued for breach of contract, but felt she needed to speak out about her negative experiences. "I did it knowing that it was a breach of contract, still, because I felt like it was my duty to warn other girls that were going to audition for America's Next Top Model to know that what you guys do and the way that you guys would poke me and use my childhood trauma against me, day in and day out," D'Amato shared. "It was just so f—ed up, and it broke my heart. Like, how could you do that?"

D'Amato continued that she didn't know how Banks can sleep at night because of her actions. "You, Tyra, you knew very well the horrible trauma that my mom inflicted on me, and you also talk so much about how you wouldn't be where you are without your mother and how powerful she is," she said. "So knowing that, you still did that to me and continued to do it to other girls, even after I spoke publicly about it."

She then referred to some of the other ANTM contestants who have gone public with their negative experiences on the show, including Cycle 24's Jeana Turner and Angelea Preston of Cycles 12. 14 and 17. D'Amato then asked once again how Banks can reconcile her conscience "knowing that you're torturing and poking at people's, girls' childhood traumas for your own profit?"


Banks' addressed her treatment of some of the models on ANTM last year when a 2006 episode clip went viral in which she criticized Dani Evans for the gap between her teeth. "Been seeing the posts about the insensitivity of some past ANTM moments and I agree with you," the Dancing With the Stars host tweeted at the time. "Looking back, those were some really off choices. Appreciate your honest feedback and am sending so much love and virtual hugs."